Friday night at Terrapin Crossroads in San Rafael, CA, Phil Lesh kicked off a weekend of music with the first of two “Dead Blues” shows, which saw the Grateful Dead bassist team up with an all-star band for a night of blues and blues-inspired tunes. The full show was offered as a free webcast via TXR and nugs.tv, as will be tonight’s Dead Blues show and tomorrow’s Phil Lesh & Friends performance.
Last night, Lesh was joined by North Mississippi Allstars’ Luther and Cody Dickinson, John Medeski, Roosevelt Collier, Junior Mack, Grahame Lesh, Danielle Nicole and Elliott Peck.
The evening kicked off with the Dead staple cover of “Viola Lee Blues.” The first set also featured the Dead’s blues classic “Mr. Charlie,” along with Willie Dixon’s “Little Red Rooster” and “The Same Thing,” and Mack taking lead on Jimmy Reed’s “Big Boss Man” and Blind Willie Johnson’s “Nobody’s Fault But Mine.”
Set two opened with the first of two Beatles covers, “Come Together,” led by Nicole. Cody then took over for another Dead staple cover, “Deep Elem Blues.” Mack sang Son House’s “Walkin’ Blues,” while Peck and Nicole shared duties on “Death Don’t Have No Mercy.” The set also featured Sam Cooke’s “Let the Good Times Roll,” The Beatles’ “Tomorrow Never Knows,” Howlin’ Wolf’s “Smokestack Lightning” and the Dead favorite “Truckin’” to close out. For the encore, Luther took over for an extended slide-guitar intro to the classic closer “And We Bid You Goodnight.”
See the full setlist below, along with full video of the show courtesy of Terrapin Crossroads and nugs.tv. Lesh returns for more Dead Blues tonight with a lineup of the Dickinsons, Medeski, Collier, The London Souls’ Tash Neal, Grahame Lesh and JD Simo, while Sunday’s Friends show will feature the Dickinsons, Medeski, Anders Osborne and a special guest. Free streams of both performances will be available via nugs.tv
Phil Lesh’s Dead Blues
Terrapin Crossroads, San Rafael, CA
Set I: Viola Lee Blues, Little Red Rooster, Hand Me Down My Walking Cane, Mr. Charlie, It Hurts Me Too, Big Boss Man, Nobody’s Fault But Mine, The Same Thing
Set II: Come Together> Deep Elem Blues, Walkin’ Blues, Death Don’t Have No Mercy, Let the Good Times Roll, Mystery Train, Tomorrow Never Knows> Smokestack Lightning, Truckin’
Enc: And We Bid You Goodnight